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The Panchatantra – Story 60

THE MONKEY’S REVENGE

There was once a King called Chandra. His sons were fond of playing with monkeys and attracted a number of them to the palace compound by giving them delicious sweetmeats. The monkeys fed sumptuously on these, grew fat, and became attached to the palace grounds. Their leader was an old monkey thoroughly conversant with the writings of the great politicians Usanas, Brihaspati and Chanakya(Celebrated writers on Politics – Usanas or Sakra is the preceptor of the demons. Brihaspati is the preceptor of the gods, and Chanakya was the prime minister of the Emperor Chandragupta Maurya. The Sukraniti. ascribed to Sukra, and the Arthasastra, ascribed to Chanakya, are still extant, and were carefully studied by ancient Indian Kings. The writings of Brihaspati on politics have perished) who in their days actually practised as statesmen what they have written down for the guidance of future generations. He had also read the leading books on medicine and veterinary science. 

In the palace compound there was also a herd of rams used by the small children for riding. One of these rams was a glutton and used to invade the kitchen by day and night whenever he got a chance and eat up everything he found there. The enraged cooks used to beat him with anything that came handy, not bothering whether it was a piece of firewood or an earthen or copper or bell-metal vessel. Seeing this, the head monkey thought ‘Surely, the monkeys will come to grief by this quarrel between this ram and the cooks. This ram is excessively fond of kitchen delicacies, and the cooks are getting into a fury over it and are beating him with anything that they can catch hold of. If they find nothing handy, as may very well happen now and then, they are sure to take a burning faggot and beat him with it. The thick wool on his body will be set on fire thereby, The ram will run to his favourite shed in the corner of the stables and roll on his dry grass bed in order to relieve his burning sensation’. 

‘The dry grass will catch fire and will in its turn set the thatched roof of the stables on fire. When the stables are burnt down, many of the favourite steeds of the King will be burnt to death and many others will doubtless be rescued with severe burns. Salihotra, the famous authority on veterinary science, has said that the best medicine for burns for horses is the fat of newly-killed monkeys. He says that by smearing this thickly over the affected parts speedy relief from pain will be obtained. The palace veterinary doctor is sure to name this medicine when the King, overwhelmed by sorrow at the burns and agonizing cries of his favourite horses, questions him. Then the king will certainly have all the monkeys in the palace compound killed so as to have fat enough to treat all the horses, for he loves his steeds far better than he does us. All these things will surely happen. So it is my duty to take timely steps to save my monkeys from this cruel fate’.

He assembled all the monkeys together in private and explained to them the impending calamity. He concluded, ‘This quarrel between this ram and the cooks will surely end in our ruin as I have explained. No one who desires to live long should remain in a place where people quarrel interminably. Quarrels destroy prosperous kingdoms, evil words destroy long-standing friendship, and evil deeds destroy hard-earned fame. So let us leave this palace and go to our native forest before destruction overtakes us’. The monkeys did not heed his words and said laughing, ‘You are in your dotage, and your intellect has been weakened. Hence this far-fetched apprehension of evils and this ridiculous advice. Well has it been said, “When one becomes old, he enters his second childhood. He is toothless, saliva flows freely out of his mouth, and his intellect never shines”.

We shall never leave these heavenly enjoyments, these nectar-like dainties of infinite variety given to us by the king’s own sons and come to the forest to eat the pungent, bitter, sour, acid, saltish and tasteless fruits of the forest.” Hearing this, the old monkey leader looked at them with eyes full of tears and said, “You fools, you cannot foresee the end of all this pleasure. This enjoyment of cooked dainties will in the end be to you a veritable poison. I cannot bear to see you perish under my eyes. So I shall go to the forest now. It has been said, ‘Blessed are they who never see a friend in misery, their homes invaded by enemies, their country overrun, and their family destroyed”. Saying this, the monkey chief left the rest and went into the forest. 

Some days after his departure, when the ram entered the kitchen as usual and was eating the dainties, even when other dishes were on the fire, the cooks were enraged beyond measure as the things eaten were the special favourites of the king and the royal dinner was not yet over. They found nothing handy to beat him with. So one of them took a burning faggot from the hearth and gave the ram several blows with it on his back.

The thick and dry wool on his back caught fire, and the ram, bleating piteously, ran to his accustomed bed of grass in the stables and rolled on it in order to give relief to the horrible burning sensation in his body. The grass caught fire and in its turn set fire to the whole stables. Some of the horses were burnt to death and others lost their eyes. The rest were rescued with difficulty by the palace servants. Even these sustained severe burns on their bodies and ran about the palace grounds neighing in a heart-rending fashion, and causing confusion in the assembled crowd. 

The king, who loved his horses dearly, came to the spot and was very much grieved lo see their plight. He called the palace veterinary doctor and asked him, ‘What is the best medicine for allaying the burning pain of these poor animals?’ The doctor looked up his books and said, ‘Sire, the great Salihotra himself, the fountain source of all veterinary science, says, ‘By applying the fat of newly-killed monkeys the pain to horses caused by burns is relieved as speedily as darkness is dispelled by the rising sun. So, let this medicine be applied at once.’ On this, the king ordered the instant slaughter of all the monkeys in the palace compound. All of them were assembled by the king’s servants under the pretense of giving them the customary dainties and were then seized and killed at once with sticks, stones, swords, knives and various other weapons and their fat extracted and applied to the burns of the horses. 

The old monkey chief heard of the wholesale destruction of his tribe from a wandering crow and was prostrate with grief. Among the monkeys destroyed so foully were his children, grandchildren, sisters’ childrens’ children and a host of more distant relatives. ‘They would not listen to my words that day and have coma to this horrible end,’ he bewailed. He thought to himself, ‘ How con I take revenge on this wretched king and his servants for their cruel act? It has been said, “He who either from fear of from selfish motives calmly puts up with the insult done by another to his family is the lowest of men “So I must certainly avenge this wholesale massacre of my family.’ 

In order to think out a suitable plan, the old monkey wandered about the forest. For many hours no feasible plan occurred to him. The day was hot and he felt very thirsty. Searching for water, he came to a lake adorned with numerous lotuses. The stillness of the place was fearful, and it seemed to him that there was some hidden danger there. Looking carefully, he found the there were many footsteps leading to the lake and none returning therefrom. He said to himself, ‘Surely, in this lake there are dreadful crocodiles which eat up the unfortunate persons who step into the water to drink. So I should not step into the water, but should suck the water through a lotus reed.’ So saying, he got a stick, stood on’ the last step above the water, raised up a lotus stalk with the stick, severed the stalk from its root, and sucked the water through the reed-like hollow lotus stalk. When he was doing this, a demon raised his head from under the water. His neck was adorned with a magnificent diamond necklace. He said to the monkey, ‘Whoever steps into this lake becomes my food. You seem to be the least wicked of the fellows I have met as you have carefully abstained from stepping into the water and polluting it. Besides, you must be awfully clever to have thought of this funny and novel way of drinking water. I am highly pleased with you. Beg of me any boon you like, and I shall grant it’. 

A bright idea suggested itself to the monkey. He asked, ‘What is the limit of your eating power? How many can you eat at a time ?’ The demon laughed and said, ‘I can eat up a hundred million and more at a time if they would only enter the water. Outside the water I am no match even for a miserable jackal.’ The monkey said, ‘I am now on terms of the bitterest enmity with King Chandra and his men. If you give me that diamond necklace, I shall by suitable words stimulate the avarice of the king and countless men of his, bring them all here, and make then> enter the lake through greed for such necklaces. You can then do what you like with them.’ The demon was highly pleased at the prospect of such a glorious dinner and at once gave the necklace and said, ‘ Friend, proceed in such a way as to bring them all speedily here. Never have I had such a dinner as you describe. Make it a reality, and seal our eternal friendship’.

The monkey went to the palace compound with the necklace round his neck and flaunted about conspicuously from tree to tree in the full view of the courtiers and palace servants. They all asked him, ‘ O monkey chief, where were you all this time, and where did you get this necklace of diamonds whose rays surpass even those of the sun ?’ The monkey said, ‘There is in a hidden spot in a forest, not far from here, a beautiful lotus lake created by the god of wealth to deposit his choicest treasures. Whoever goes and dips in it on Sunday mornings, when the sun is just half above the horizon, will be given by the god of wealth, whose guest he will be, a necklace like this to wear round his neck when he emerges out of the waters’. 

The news was carried to King Chandra who at once sent for the monkey and asked him, ‘O, monkey chief, is all this true ? Is there really a lake by bathing in which everybody can get a magnificent necklace?’ The monkey said, ‘Sire, the necklace on my neck is proof of it. If you want such diamond necklaces, send with me some persons and I shall show the lake to them.’ Hearing this, the king, whose cupidity was roused by the sight and feel of the magnificent diamond necklace round the monkey’s neck, said, ‘In that case, I shall myself come with all ray relatives and courtiers this very Sunday, that is tomorrow. Will that be too early for the god of wealth to receive us and give us proper necklaces?’ The monkey replied, ‘It will not matter in the least to the god of wealth how early you go. Necklaces like these are heaped there like sand on the beach.’ ‘Then, we may take it as settled’ said the king and went hastily to tell the joyous news to the queens. 

On Sunday, long before dawn, the king, the queens, the palace officials including the veterinary doctor, the courtiers and palace servants, and a whole mob of citizens started for the lotus lake. The old monkey was seated by the king on his own lap and taken in his palanquin. Well has it been said, ‘O, goddess of greed, I salute thee. Moved by thee, even rich persons are led to do ridiculously improper acts and to wander about impossible deserts, A man having a hundred gold coins wishes for a thousand, he having a thousand wishes for a hundred thousand, he who has a hundred thousand wishes for a kingdom, he who has a kingdom wishes for the sovereignty of the world, and he who has that wishes to enjoy the pleasures of heaven. When a man grows old, his hair becomes grey, his teeth fall off, and his eyes and ears lose their power, but his greed alone grows apace with an immortal youth.’ 

After reaching the lake, the monkey said to the King, ‘Let ail get ready to dip into the lake when the sun’s orb is just half above the horizon as that is the auspicious time. Let all get in at the same time. You and I alone will go after they return and the crowd is cleared. I shall take you to a hidden vault where necklaces of special distinction are stored and shall make the god of wealth give you as many of them as you like.’ The king gladly agreed. 

As soon as the sun’s orb was half above the horizon, all except the king and the monkey dipped In the lake in one enthusiastic rush and were all eaten up by the demon. Seeing that they did not return for a long time the king asked the monkey, ‘Why is it that my people are delaying so long ?’ The monkey speedily got up a banyan tree and said to the king, ‘ O, wicked king, all your people have teen eaten up by a demon lurking under these waters. You sacrificed my tribe heartlessly to relieve the burning sensation of the horses. I have in return as heartlessly sacrificed your tribe to relieve my heart-ache and the burning sensation in the stomach of this demon who has never enough to eat. I have taken ample revenge for the murder of ray beloved ones, I have spared you as you are my king, as I have been treated very kindly by you to-day, and as I want you to live and grieve for your beloved ones as I do. One wrong should be answered by another, one murder avenged by a similar one, and one wicked deed by a like wicked deed. That has always been our monkey rule of life. We imitate whatever you do. Good we return with good, and evil with evil. I -see no sin in that. You exterminated my family, and I have exterminated yours/ Hearing this, the king was filled with grief and walked back alone along the way by which he had come in such pomp. 

When he had gone, the demon rose from the water and said to the monkey in glee, ‘Well done, ‘O, monkey in the banyan tree, you have killed your enemies, made a friend, gained a necklace, and allayed both your physical thirst and the thirst for revenge.’ The monkey then took leave of the demon and wandered merrily in the forest. 

The Panchatantra – Story 59

THOUSAND WIT, HUNDRED-WIT, AND SINGLE-WIT

In a certain pond, there were two fishes called Thousand-wit and Hundred-wit. There was also a frog called Single-wit who was their close friend. They used to assemble at the shore every evening and have a small chat before entering the water again. One evening, when they were having their usual chat, they saw fishermen come with nets in hand. Seeing the pond, the fishermen said among themselves, ‘There is little water and much fish in this pond. So we shall come here in the morning and fish.’ So saying, they went home. Hearing these words, piercing as a thunderbolt, the three friends discussed the situation. The frog said, ‘ O, Thousand-wit and Hundred-wit, what shall we do now, flee from here or remain here ?’ Hearing this, Thousand-wit laughed and said, ‘ O, friend, don’t be frightened by mere words. The evil intentions of serpents, wicked persons and other villains do not always succeed. Hence this world continues to exist. These fishermen may, after all, not even come in the morning. Even if they come, I can save myself and you with the power of my intellect. I know many ways of moving in water.’ 

Hearing this. Hundred-wit said, ‘Thousand-wit has spoken well. There is nothing in this world impossible of achievement for men of intellect. Even the Nandas armed with swords were destroyed by Chanakya by the power of his intellect. 
The intellect of the wise penetrates quickly even places where wind and the rays of the sun have no access. So it is not proper that we should abandon our birthplace and the abode of our ancestors simply because we have heard the words of these fishermen. It has been said, “That happiness which one enjoys in the place of his birth, though imperfect, is not found even in Heaven where we are privileged to come into contact with celestial beings. “So we should never leave this pond. I shall protect you with the power of my intellect.” The frog said, ‘Friends, I am poor Single-wit, and my single wit tells me to run away from here forthwith. So I shall go to another pond to-day itself with my wife.’ So saying the frog went with his wife that night itself to another pond. 

The fishermen came the next morning, spread their nets in the pond and caught all the fishes, tortoises, frogs, crabs and other denizens of the water. Hundred-wit and Thousand-wit with their wives tried hard to escape with the aid of some special movements but were caught in the net and killed forthwith in order to avoid further trouble. The fishermen returned home in the afternoon extremely satisfied with the day’s catch. Owing to their heavy weight. Hundred-wit was carried by a fisherman on his shoulder, and Thousand-wit was carried by two persons slung on a piece of rope. Single-wit saw the fishermen go past and said to his wife, ‘Darling, see this. While Hundred-wit is carried aloft and Thousand-wit is hanging down, I, Single-wit, O beloved, am safely sporting in clear water.’ 

The Panchatantra – Story 58

THE LEARNED FOOLS

There were once in Ujjain four Brahmin boys who were intimate friends. They said to one another, ‘Let us go abroad and become learned/ They accordingly went to a celebrated teacher in Kanauj and studied very hard under him for twelve years(In ancient India the usual period for graduation was twelve years, but many earnest scholars continued their studies for another twelve or twenty-four years). At the and of this period they became consummate scholars. They took leave of their teacher and started back for Ujjain with their books. They resolved to take a different route from the one they had taken when going to Kanauj. Their idea in doing this was to see new towns and villages and also to prove their ability to travel by an utterly strange route. 

When they had gone some considerable distance they came to a bifurcation of the road. They were perplexed as to which route to take. One of them said, ‘Now the problem is which route is to be followed by us. My book says, “The difference between a learned man and a fool is that the former will never need to ask another about his course of action as his learning will enable him to solve all problems of life. The fool is always depending on the advice and help of another. “So it is out of the question to ask anybody about the correct route. We ourselves must decide it.’ The four sat down at the forking of the road and opened their books(Books were literally the guides, philosophers and friends of the ancient Indian Pandit, and their contents were gospel truths to him. For everything on earth, heaven and hell he consulted them and went by them). 

Just then a funeral procession with the corpse of a dead merchant went along one of the two roads as it led to the burning ground. At once one of the learned men looked into his book and said, ‘The problem is solved. My book says, “One should in cases of doubt adopt the course adopted by the many. “So, we have perforce to follow the route taken by these numerous persons.’ The other three roared with delight at this easy solution and followed the road taken by the funeral procession whiling away their time with many beautiful couplets praising the advantages of learning and the helplessness of the unlearned. The road abruptly stopped at the burning ground. The learned men stood at some distance from the funeral pyre and considered what they should do next. 

They saw an ass also standing there. ‘Ah, this must mean something’ said one of them’. ‘What does this ass’s standing by us on this burning ground show?’ At once another consulted his book and said, ‘I have it. It shows that this ass is our friend. It is written here, “He who stands by one in sickness, in adversity, in a famine, in a war, in the court of the King, and? in the burning ground is a friend(Most friends intrigue against each other in the Courts of Kings. Such are not real friends. That is one meaning. Another is that a friend should stand by one even when summoned by the King for being tried and punished). This ass stands by us in a burning ground. So he is assuredly our friend. Let us therefore give him the greetings due to a friend.’ So, one clung to the ass’s neck in fervid embrace, another kissed the ass, a third washed his feet, and a fourth shed tears of joy at meeting him after such long separation and enquired about his health and why he had not been seen for such a long time The astounded mourners saw all this and laughed heartily even in their sorrow. 

Soon, a camel which had broken loose from its owner when about to be harnessed came gallopping along to the cremation ground’. ‘What does this signify?’ asked one of the learned men. Another referred to his book and said, ‘It is written here, “Virtue gallops along(The meaning is that virtue is never calculating or halting but always swift in execution and that it gallops with one to Heaven)”, ‘So this animal must be Virtue as it is galloping’. At this a third learned man referred to his book and said, ‘My book says, “Yoke what is beloved unto you with Virtue and see that they always march together(The meaning is ‘always see that what you like goes hand in hand with virtue and never part company with it’)”. ‘So we must yoke this camel, which is Virtue personified, with this ass which is beloved unto us owing to its being our friend.’ The four then took a piece of rope and, after heroic efforts, tied the struggling camel and ass together, receiving many kicks from the animals and the jeers of the mob in the process. 

Then the learned men tried to march them together. The animals, not being accustomed to this novel method of progression, refused to move. This did not surprise their tormentors. It is said in my book,’ said one of them ‘that it is the most difficult thing in the world to make what is beloved unto us march along with virtue. Our teacher said that we have to force them to do so, Let us therefore give good blows to this ass and make it march with Virtue.’ They then beat the ass with a stout stick and it filled the place with its brayings. The camel too belowed in its fright, and both the animals were confusedly going round and round while the blows increased as the learned men wanted them to keep to a straight course. The washerman who owned the ass and the merchant who owned the camel both rushed to the spot on hearing the cries of their animals and the deafening din of the assembled crowd. Seeing the real situation, they both took stout cudgels and beat the learned men for their so horribly ill-treating their animals. 

The learned men ran away at great speed to escape more beating and halted only when they were free from all danger of pursuit. ‘What did those two fellows mean by beating us ?’ asked one when they had all halted to take breath. Another referred to his book and said. ‘My book says, “A fool cannot see the wisdom of a sensible act. “That is the reason. How could those fools understand the wisdom of making what is beloved unto us march hand in hand with virtue ? Indeed, I doubt whether they even knew the ass to be our friend and the camel to be the personification of virtue. To their prosaic eyes, they were only an ordinary ass and camel and we but ordinary men. Oh, when will all these unlearned masses get the light of knowledge and see things in other than their vulgar aspects?’ The others agreed with this masterly diagnosis. 

Presently, a farmer passed them in the opposite direction. He asked them, ‘Why were you running so fast One of the learned men referred to his book and said, It is written here “A learned man cannot run fast enough from fools”. We were pursued by some fools, and we are all learned men. So we ran at top speed though I am afraid we neither began at the correct moment nor reached the requisite standard’. The farmer went away bewildered. When the four had proceeded some more distance, they saw a river with deep water and innumerable reeds. The problem was how to cross this river as there was no boat. One of the learned men referred to his book and said, ‘Thank God, this problem can be easily solved. It is written here, “A wise man knows how to ferry himself across.’ 

Saying this, he jumped among the reeds in order to pluck one of them. He got caught among the reeds and the deep mud and water and could not extricate himself. Only his head was just above the water level. His friends were unable to pull him out. One of them referred to his book and said, ‘It is written here “When the whole is about to be lost, a wise man forsakes one half in order to save the other half. With one half he can somehow accomplish his object. He will be helpless if the whole is lost. “Our friend is about to be entirely lost to us. I shall save at least half of him’ With this, he took his big knife and cut off his friend’s head. When he had the head secure in his hands, he found that it could not speak or walk or do anything with at least half the ability of his friend as he had expected. ‘What is this due to?’ said he in bewilderment. One of his- friends referred to his book and said, ‘My book says, “Some things should be left to themselves till a use is found for them”. This is evidently one of those things. So let us leave it here and come for it. when we have a use for it.’ So the three left the head on the river bank and, frustrated in their attempts to cross the river, went in another direction and reached a village. 

Each of the learned men was invited by a different villager to his house for meals. One was given by his host shredded rice(The shredded rice will be, of course, long, crooked, intricate and twisted) done in ghee. The learned man looked up his book add said, ‘It is written here “Intricate, crooked and twisted things lead one to ruin.”So I will have none of this’ and ran away without eating anything. The second learned man was given by his host some pancakes. He referred to his book and said, ‘ It is written here “A wise man should have nothing to do with shallow things having no depth”So I will not have anything to do with these’ and went away dinner-less. The third learned man was given by his host vatikas(These are little round cakes made of blackgram and rice and with holes in the middle). He looked up his book and said, ‘ It is written here “Gaps and holes bring about calamities”. So I do not want any of these’ and went away without eating a bit. The story spread in the village rapidly, and soon a crowd of men, women and children followed the three learned men, jeering land hooting and laughing. Thus the learned men, who had been received with respect, were sent out with jeers, all because they lacked the saving grace of commonsense. 

The Panchatantra – Story 57

THE LION MADE ALIVE AGAIN

There were once four Brahmins who were intimate friends. Three of them were learned in all the sciences but were devoid of commonsense. The fourth was not learned but had abundant commonsense. All the four met together one day and said among themselves, ‘What is the use of learning if we do not go to foreign countries and, by pleasing the Kings there, earn presents ? So let us go abroad.’ 

Accordingly, they all set out. When they had gone some way? the oldest among them said, ‘ One among us is an unlearned man gifted only with commonsense. No King will give any reward for mere commonsense without learning. Nor can the other three be expected to give him a share of their earnings. So let him return home’. The second learned man said to the man of commonsense ‘You have no learning. So go home.’ The third learned man however, said, ‘It is improper on our part to ask him to return home thus. All of us four have been friends from our childhood and have played together and moved together. So let this noble friend continue to accompany us. We shall give him a portion of our earnings.’ The other two agreed and all the four resumed their journey. 

Soon they came to a forest and saw the bones of a dead lion. Then one of the learned men said, ‘Now we can test the arts we have learnt. By the power of our learning we shall make this creature once more alive. I can put all the bones in their places; The second learned man said, I can supply the skin, flesh and blood; The third said, If both of you do these, I can infuse life into the animal again; Then the first learned man put the bones in place and the second supplied the skin, flesh and blood.

The third was about to infuse life into the animal when the unlearned man of commonsense said, ‘This is a lion. If you make it alive again, it will kill all of us. So desist.’ The learned man replied, ‘Fie! you fool! I am not going to make my learning remain fruitless and unproved when the others have proved theirs. Then the commonsense man said, ‘Be it so. But, pray, wait one moment while I climb up this adjoining tree.’ So saying, he forthwith climbed up the tree. As soon as he had done it. the learned man made the lion live again. The lion rose up with a roar and forthwith killed the three learned fools who had created it. The man of commonsense got down from the tree when the lion had departed and reached his house safe.

The Panchatantra – Story 56

THE WEAVER MANDARAKA

In a certain village there lived a weaver called Mandaraka. One day, as the pegs in his loom had broken down, he took an axe and went in search of wood to repair the loom. He reached the sea-shore. He found a nice big tree there. He was about to cut it down saying himself : ‘I can make plenty of pegs with this tree’. A fairy in that tree said to him : “Good man, spare this tree. This is my home. I live in it peacefully enjoying the ocean breeze.” ”But what am I to do ?”asked the weaver. I want to repair my loom without which I shall go hungry’ “Let us make a bargain,” said the fairy. “I shall give you whatever you like, provided you spare this tree’.

“All right,”said the weaver, “I will go home and get the advice of my friend and wife as to what to ask of you.” She agreed. Entering the town he met his friend, a barber, and consulted him. The barber said : ‘Ask for a kingdom over which you can rule. I will be your prime minister and we can both enjoy to our hearts’ content.” “Let me consult my wife also.”said the weaver. “Don’t” said the barber. “Give a woman food jewels and dresses galore, but never ask her advice.” “I must ask her,”said the weaver. He then went and consulted his wife. He also told her what the barber had advised. She said : “Never take a barber’s advice. What do barbers know except to shave? What do they know of kings and kingdoms ? Ruling a kingdom means endless trouble and lot of worry about peace, war,, diplomacy and what not. His very sons and brothers will plot against the ruler s life so that they may rule the kingdom instead.”

The weaver said : “You are right. What shall I ask?”. She said, “With your one pair of arms and one head you are making one cloth per day and that is meeting all our expenses. You ask the fairy for two pairs of arms and an extra head so that you may make two clothes a day, one to meet our expenses and one for buying luxuries.” “Splendid,” said the weaver, and went back to the fairy and begged for an extra pair of arms and an extra head. She granted his boon and he became two-headed and four-armed. But, when he was coming home, people mistook him for a devil and beat him with clubs and stones and killed him.